LONDON — Julien Macdonald is set to lend his glitter and showmanship to a new collection of clothing, accessories and homeware for the online retailer Freemans Grattan Holdings, the U.K. division of the German retail giant Otto Group.
Macdonald, who has dressed red carpet regulars including Kylie Minogue, Kim Kardashian, Beyoncé and Heidi Klum, and who is no stranger to the stage himself, having appeared as a judge on “Britain’s Next Top Model” and as a contestant on “Strictly Come Dancing,” has inked a three-year deal with Freemans.
In addition to creating the collections, which will be unveiled in the spring, he’ll also contribute some of his new designs to the company’s Curvissa plus-size collection, and Kaleidoscope, which focuses on more formalwear and eveningwear. A selection of his styles will also be sold through the Otto sites in Germany.
The company said the deal is part of a strategic move to “work alongside the fashion industry to develop further exclusive partnerships with top designers, leading influencers and coveted brands over the coming years.”
Ann Steer, chief executive officer of Freemans, said the company is committed to delivering “exclusive brands with differentiated product that we know customers will love.” Macdonald, meanwhile, said his aim is “to make women everywhere feel fabulous.”
Richard Cristofoli, chief customer officer at Freemans, had previously worked with Macdonald at Debenhams, where the designer had a collection known as Star. He said Macdonald’s aesthetic and handwriting continue to have a “strong appeal and energy.”
The designer also has a strong profile in Germany where he was a guest judge on Germany’s Next Topmodel, which is hosted by Klum.
Freemans is an online retailer based in Yorkshire, England, selling men’s and women’s clothing, lingerie, children’s wear, homeware, fragrance and accessories under its own labels and others including Nike, Adidas and Bench.
Its parent Otto Group, is one of the world’s largest online retailers, with 14.3 billion euros in revenue in fiscal 2019-20.
Otto’s diverse portfolio ranges from online retailers such as Freemans to the homeware company Crate & Barrel to e-payment platform CollectAI and the Hanseatic Bank.
Sergio Bucher, the former Amazon Fashion Europe executive and ceo of Debenhams, joined Otto’s executive board earlier this year and is responsible for its brands and retail division.
Cristofoli said in an interview that Freemans looks to appeal to a broad consumer of online shoppers, aged 35-plus. The teams are working on the Julien Macdonald ranges now, and prices will be accessible. He added that collections will be seasonal, with regular updates and new drops.